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If You Want to Have Court Filings Sealed, Don't "Treat[] a Motion to Seal as an Afterthought"

From Judge Joshua Wolson's opinion yesterday in Alchem Inc. v. Cage (E.D. Pa.), the background: In this case, Alchem USA Inc. {[which] sells and markets liquid nicotine under the brand name "Nicselect"} knows that its former salesperson—and self-proclaimed "Nicotine Queen"—Terianne T. Cage, lured away some of its customers when she went to work for...

How the Government Seized a Rare Wu-Tang Clan Album (and a DAO Bought It Back)

PleasrDAO, a decentralized autonomous organization "governed around a specific set of rules enforced on the blockchain" according to Cointelegraph, just made public that they paid $4 million to procure Wu-Tang Clan's Once Upon a Time in Shaolin from the federal government. How did the federal government get its grubby hands on the rare and unreleased...

The Minnesota Supreme Court Rejects the Legal Theory Underlying a Murder Charge Against Derek Chauvin

Former Minneapolis police officer Mohamed Noor, who fatally shot an unarmed 911 caller in 2017, was originally sentenced to more than 12 years in prison. Yesterday a state judge, responding to a recent Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that rejected the most serious charge against Noor, imposed a new sentence that is less than half as long. That development...

40 Years of Trillion-Dollar Debt

On October 22, 1981—exactly 40 years ago today—America's national debt hit $1 trillion for the first time. "If we, as a nation, need a warning," President Ronald Reagan said in a televised address a few weeks before the country surpassed the 13-figure debt threshold, "let that be it." Today, the national debt exceeds $28 trillion. In the fiscal year...

Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions

Please enjoy the latest edition of Short Circuit, a weekly feature from the Institute for Justice. This week, the Supreme Court ruled that appeals courts were wrong to deny qualified immunity to police officers in two separate cases, each of them involving unruly suspects in fast-developing situations. Over at Forbes.com, IJ's Nick Sibilla gives the...

Supreme Court Agrees to Fast Track Review of Texas Abortion Law

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to block Senate Bill 8, the Texas law that bans all abortions after the sixth week of pregnancy, from going into effect. "The applicants now before us have raised serious questions regarding the constitutionality of the Texas law at issue," said the unsigned 5-4 majority opinion in Whole Woman's Health v....

Making Sense of the S.B. 8 Rocket Docket

In recent weeks, I've urged the Supreme Court to resolve the S.B. 8 cases not on the shadow docket, but on the rocket docket. I wondered if the Court would schedule the cases for December, along with Dobbs. Or whether the Court would hear the case in January or February, as a caboose to Dobbs. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Today, the Court issued two orders...

How Democrats Could Hide $2 Trillion in New Spending With Budget Gimmicks

It now seems fairly certain unlikely that President Joe Biden's $3.5 trillion "Build Back Better" will make it through the U.S. Senate as a $3.5 trillion spending plan. Instead, the final version of the bill will probably have a topline spending figure of less than $2 trillion. Even Biden is now admitting as much. But it could have up to $2 trillion...

Supreme Court Grants Certiorari in Texas S.B. 8 Cases (Updated)

The Supreme Court Court acted quickly to grant certiorari before judgment in Whole Woman's Health v. Jackson and United States v. Texas, the two primary challenges to S.B. 8, the controversial Texas abortion law. The order in WWH reads: WHOLE WOMAN'S HEALTH, ET AL. V. JACKSON, JUDGE, ETC., ET AL. The petition for a writ of certiorari before judgment...

Indiana Woman Must Shut Down Business After County Officials Determine Her Farm Isn't Zoned for Commercial Goat Yoga or Goat Snuggling

Since the beginning of the pandemic, Jordan Stevens has been running Indiana's only full-time goat yoga operation on her farm in rural Hamilton County. She's since been forced to stop offering that service by the planning officials who say her property isn't zoned for goat yoga uses. Her application for a zoning variance that would have legalized the...

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